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Area of Impact: Computing, Data and Digital Technologies

Interested in making sense of big data? Want to contribute to advances in virtual reality that train a pilot to operate a 787 or a surgeon to perform a complex procedure? Interested in machine learning or improving wireless networks and communication?

Explore your passions and the academic and career pathways available to you.

Plan your courses   Related majors  Get involved   Study abroad   Join a capstone   Do research  

Choose meaningful general education courses

You can fulfill your general education requirements while building the context and creativity you'll need to engineer solutions to meaningful problems. Keep in mind that in your first year, you may want to start out in 100 or 200 level classes and build towards upper-division coursework throughout your time at the UW.

For example:

  • SOC 225: Data and Society (I&S)
  • INFO 102: Gender and Information Technology (I&S and DIV)
  • INFO 402: Gender, Race and Information Technology (I&S and DIV)
  • CHID 370/COM 302: The Cultural Impact of Information Technology (I&S or VLPA)
  • COM 303: Social Effects of Technology and Social Media (I&S)
  • EDUC 375: Digital Media Literacy (VLPA)

More data science courses can be found on the eScience Institute site. To talk with a data scientist, visit data science office hours.

General education requirements

As a UW student, you are required to take general education courses. As an engineering student, this typically consists of:

  • 10 credits of Visual, Literary, & Performing Arts (VLPA)
  • 10 credits of Individuals & Societies (I&S)
  • 4 credits of VLPA or I&S
  • 3 credits of Diversity (DIV)

  academics   applied learning   profile   research

Aeronautics and Astronautics

Aeronautics and Astronautics Historically more constrained

Keep exploring


Bioengineering Historically more constrained

Keep exploring

Bioresource Science Engineering

Bioresource Science Engineering

Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical Engineering Historically more constrained

Materials Science & Engineering

Materials Science & Engineering

Get involved!

Join student organizations working in your area of interest. You’ll make friends who have similar interests while building skills working on your passions!

Study abroad opportunities

Here are some examples of study abroad programs that could deepen your understanding of the way engineering can impact the lives of people around the world.

Many study abroad programs include engineering classes, participation in research or internships. See UW Engineering's Study Abroad page to learn more and start the planning process.

Capstone design projects in computing, data and digital technologies

In your senior year, you will participate in a capstone design experience that serves as a culmination of your engineering study. Past capstone projects in computing, data and digital technologies have included:

  • Electrical and computer engineering students worked with Kernel Labs to design, build and test a cost-efficient general purpose rover for farm use. The rover is remotely operated and built with a machine learning framework for implementing future applications.
  • Industrial and systems engineering students worked with the Genie company to improve the usability and speed of their database that tracks parts and part materials. The team provided a wireframe to be linked with SQL programming to enhance the user interface.
  • Mechanical engineering students were tasked with capturing, assessing and analyzing large amounts of McKinstry's building data to identify trends and deliver recommendations on what occupants and operators should be doing differently to positively impact resource consumption in the built environment.

Learn more: See Industry Capstone Projects (2018-2019) and a list of department-based capstone projects.

Join a research team

Every UW Engineering department offers undergraduate research opportunities. To get started:

The following centers are involved in research related to computing, data and digital technologies. Contact faculty to see if they have room.

 Additionally, the following research programs are specifically relevant for students interested in computing data and digital technologies: